Bible Studies for Life Lesson for June 26- Why Be Generous?
June 9 2011 by Jim Grieme, pastor, Watkins Chapel Baptist Church

Focal Passages: Luke 19:1-10; 2 Corinthians 8-9; 1 John 3:16-18

Anyone who has traveled in larger cities has come across beggars and panhandlers. They often gather along well-traveled thoroughfares, whether the off-ramps of freeways, heavily-trafficked sidewalks near stores and restaurants, or just by accosting you while entering or exiting your vehicle in a parking lot. They “look” needy, but are they really? USA Today once wrote some of these “panhandlers” make over $70,000 a year — just by looking pitiful!

As believers, those who profess to belong to Christ, we are to be different from those outside of a relationship with Christ.

This means we view the world, ourselves and what we have differently. We are no longer of this world since we belong to Christ and His kingdom. Since our “citizenship” is to another King, we should also act differently.

One of the most important characteristics of this difference is how we treat our belongings, our things.

When we reach the point we view our money, our stuff and our goods as not ours, but that money, stuff and good belong to Christ, it is then that people can see Christ in our lives most clearly!

In Luke 19:1-10, Zacchaeus demonstrates the changed nature of someone who has encountered Christ in a life-changing way. Jesus had announced to both Zacchaeus and the crowd He was going to the house of Zacchaeus.

Zacchaeus was so overjoyed, he stood and proclaimed how Jesus had changed him — he was going to give away “half” of all he possessed and restore four-fold what he had swindled. No one forced him.

Jesus had not made this a requirement of salvation. Zacchaeus was a changed man. When we realize who we are, then we have a chance to demonstrate what we are. Only after coming to this conclusion will anyone else be able to determine to whom we belong.

When we see Jesus, really see Him like Zacchaeus did, we will be unable to react in any other way except joyful worship! The Lord of all Creation has made us His! We will desire to tell everyone about the one who “called us out of darkness into His marvelous light” (1 Peter 2:9).

This will affect our character, our relationships and our wealth. We’re His, and all we have is His.

By giving some of His things away to accomplish His purposes, we will experience a joy beyond description and give proof of His love within us! What better reason is there to be generous?
6/9/2011 6:14:00 AM by Jim Grieme, pastor, Watkins Chapel Baptist Church | with 0 comments

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